Swedish Party Demands Law Against Nuclear Weapons Ahead of NATO Negotiations
According to the Greens, the junior allies in the ruling coalition, the all forms of nuclear weapons should be banned on Swedish territory, including port calls or allied transit through Swedish waters and airspace.
The Green Party of Sweden, the sidekicks of the ruling Social Democrats, have demanded that Parliament immediately adopts a new law banning nuclear weapons in Sweden, both in peacetime and in time of war.
“We must continue to work for nuclear disarmament”, Greens spokeswoman Märta Stenevi told national broadcaster SVT, announcing plans to present a special motion in Parliament with a list of demands ahead of negotiations with NATO on Sweden's accession.
According to the Greens, the ban should apply to all forms of nuclear weapons on Swedish territory, including port calls or allied transit through Swedish waters and airspace.
Social Democrat Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson has already announced that Sweden, just like Norway and Denmark, will clearly declare that it doesn't want either nuclear weapons or permanent NATO bases on Swedish territory.
According to Stenevi, though, that's not enough. She cited exceptions in Denmark and Norway's case due to oral agreements and demanded national legislation in case NATO subsequently requires member states to accept nuclear weapons.
Similarly, the Greens don't want Sweden to participate in NATO's special committee for nuclear weapons.
“We think that Sweden should continue to work for disarmament and the abolition of nuclear arms. Participating in a group that will direct nuclear weapons towards specific targets will be tantamount to legitimising them”, Stenevi mused.
Lastly, Stenevi said she wanted Sweden to pursue the principle of “no first use” within the alliance, which means that nuclear weapons may only be used in case of prior nuclear attack.
Finland and Sweden have been considering joining NATO since Russia launched its special military operation in Ukraine on 24 February. Both countries announced their official decisions to abandon their historic non-alignment on Sunday, with the Left and Greens being the only parties objecting.
On Monday, Swedish Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson said Sweden and Finland will jointly apply for NATO membership on Wednesday.
US President Joe Biden will host his Finnish counterpart Sauli Niinistö and the Swedish prime minister at the White House on 19 May for talks on the two nations' NATO applications.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said on Sunday that the alliance will welcome Finland and Sweden with open arms and pledged to fast-track their membership applications. However, accession to NATO may only occur with unanimous agreement of all members, and Turkey has so far expressed opposition to Finland's and Sweden's joining NATO.